Mapper of the Month: Patricia Solis (USA)
01.11.2022 - Pierre Parmentier
- Hello Patricia. Would you like to briefly introduce yourself to our readers?
- I live in Tempe, Arizona, USA. I am 51 years old, married to a Panamanian and the mother of two. Both boys are in college now. I have a twin sister.
- How and when did you get to know OpenStreetMap?
- I was invited to start mapping on OSM during the Haiti Earthquake in 2010 by a friend working in the humanitarian sector. I created an account, contributed, but lost track. I returned to map again in about 2014.
- How do you use OpenStreetMap?
- In 2014 I wrote the concept of what would become YouthMappers (*) with colleagues. I use OSM to connect young people around the world to learn about mapping and about each other.
- What kind of contributor are you and in which area do you map?
- I am a relatively light contributor, varying in frequency. I tend to map in alot of different places as I’m teaching different students. I map just enough to demonstrate how and then I help others.
- What are you mapping? Do you have a specialisation?
- Most of the projects I map with are YouthMappers projects. Most of the time this is connected to a humanitarian, development, or research purpose.
- What is your greatest achievement as mapper?
- Inspiring thousands of university students to use OSM. YouthMappers has chapters on more than 327 university campuses in 67 countries so far.
- Why are you mapping? What motivates you?
- Mapping provides a window to see the world. The openness of OSM allows us to connect to each other, and ideally work together and learn from each other.
- Do you have any ideas to expand the OpenStreetMap community, to motivate more people to contribute?
- Be a good ancestor. Pay it forward to younger mappers. Even if they do not continue for a long time, they will take the experience with them into their future.
- Do you have contact with other mappers?
- Frequently I am in contact with YouthMappers and the OSM community.
- What is in your view the greatest strength of OpenStreetMap?
- That open geospatial data is a public good. It can be used and reused by those who create it. This connects us.
- What are the largest challenges for OpenStreetMap?
- The greatest challenges stem from the resounding success and growth. How do we keep thriving as a community of communities as we grow larger and larger? How do we make sure we include a diversity of mappers and voices?
- How to do stay on top of news about OpenStreetMap?
- The most fun way is to go to the State of the Map conferences in person!
- To conclude, is there anything else you want to share with the readers?
- Thank you for recognizing the various ways people contribute to OSM, and not just by editing. We appreciate you!
Thank you, Patricia, for this interview.